Yesterday began the 2012 season for the DonorsChoose Science Bloggers for Students Challenge. This is a nation-wide effort for science bloggers to promote classroom science projects and ask our readers to help support these projects. Why should you donate? Teachers want to give their students the best education possible. However, in many cases, funding is not available to pursue hands-on projects which give students first-hand experience with science topics…and all the benefits and critical thinking skills that go along with it! By donating even a few dollars, you’re helping to give students a chance to see what science is all about.
This year, I’ve created my own DonorsChoose page which highlights two geoscience projects (suprise!). I think these are some great projects that could teach a lot to young students and are deserving of your donations. The first project is Mrs. White’s class in Modesto California, which is requesting a seafloor simulation kit, a landform demonstration kit and a book on plate tectonics. The second project is for Ms. Mower’s fourth grade class in Riverton, Utah. I like this one because she’d like to provide a whole lot of material in order to teach her students about “how rocks and minerals influence our everyday lived experiences.” Right up my alley!
While for obvious reasons I’d like all my readers to donate to these two causes, there are plenty of others to choose from and many other geobloggers have created their own pages. Here are a few to choose from:
The “Geobloggers for Earth Science Education” giving page (including Highly Allochthonous, Maitri’s VatulBlog and others) is supporting around 15 projects – wow! These deal with drinking water purity, designing earthquake-proof buildings, and much more. One “project” is simply a teacher that needs help purchasing a printer and paper to create classroom worksheets.
Eruptions is throwing in his support for two projects that want to build volcano models.
Contemplative Mammoth has three science projects, one of which has already reached their goal! Of the remaining two, one is looking to purchase microscopes and the other needs lab safety equipment for their students.
I’ll add more participating geobloggers here as I come across them, and you can find out more about the projects they’re supporting by visiting their respective blogs.
According to the American Geosciences Institute, one of the top reasons students pursue a degree in the geosciences is because they were exposed to Earth Science topics in school (kindergarten through college). Yet, a very small percentage of students are even exposed to the geosciences prior to college (I know I wasn’t). With this in mind, your donations may even be introducing a student to their future passion!
Donations will be accepted between now and November 5th, so head on over to my DonorsChoose page and chip in a few (or more) dollars!